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IMF Mission – FIAA Meeting

November 8, 2019
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IMF Tax Administration Mission on Medium Term Revenue Strategy (MTRS) visited Tirana during November and meet with FIAA Representatives. During the consultations with the FIAA, were discussed the main concerns and challenges Business is facing while operating in Albania. The main focus the business was giving in the meeting, was also on the progress of tax and customs reform in the country along with some ideas and recommendations they were proposing for improvements in this area. FIAA members in this meeting were coming from various industries, but what they stressed out, was a common concern when it comes with the relation they have with Tax Institutions in the country.

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FIAA Tax and Financial Committee

November 1, 2019
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After the Ministry of Finance and Economy  released the Draft Law “On invoices and the system for monitoring the transactions” and the meeting of the Fiscal Council, the FIAA Tax and Financial Committee met at the beginning of November to comment and discuss on these drafts along with other changes and draft amendments part of the Fiscal Package 2020 such as:

  • Draft Law on Tax Procedures and its Report
  • Amendment on Tax on Incomes and its Report
  • Draft Law on National Taxes and its Report
  • Draft Law and Draft Decision on VAT and relevant report.

Given the broader impact that these draft laws were expected to have to the business, FIAA members have delivered reviews on these Drafts to the Ministry of Finance and Economy along with suggestions for the Fiscal Package drafts.

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FIAA receives Canadian Mission in Tirana

October 21, 2019
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Minister/Counselor Mrs. Edith St-Hilaire, in charge for Commercial Sector at the Canadian Embassy in Rome and Mr. Matthew Kalisz, First Secretary and Trade Commissioner, paid an official visit during October in Tirana. During the visit, they met FIAA Representatives Mr. Perparim Kalo, Board Director and Mr. Perparim Alikaj, Chairman of FIAA Committee of Mining Oil & Gas. During this meeting, FIAA representatives presented a general view on the present Albanian foreign investment and economic situation, potential areas for investments and random barriers faced by investors while doing business in the country.

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FIAA Board meets with RCC Experts for the implementation of IRAP

October 17, 2019
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Being the only foreign business representing organization in Albania, FIAA met with the RCC Representatives (Regional Cooperation Council), and the Ministry of Finance and Economy, to give its views and perspectives on the implementation of Individual Reform Action Plan (IRAP) within the MAP REA Regional Investment Reform Agenda.  During the consultations with the FIAA Representatives, were discussed the ongoing reforms and policies undertaken in Albania along with the specific concerns Business is facing. FIAA highlighted the importance of the business involvement in the consulting process and stressed out continuous lack of the follow up in several government initiatives.

The expected outcome of this meeting was a clear set of reform priorities and implementation timelines over the next year and a half for each of the policy areas covered by the IRAP, ensuring that Albania’s respective policy priorities are addressed properly through the implementation of the IRAP.

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Investment Council discusses on Investment Potentials and Priority Sectors

October 4, 2019
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Chaired by the Minister of Finance and Economy, Ms Anila Denaj, Albania Investment Council discussed “On Investment Potentials and Priority Sectors” during its scheduled meeting in October 2019. In her opening speech, Minister Denaj said that the meeting is a good opportunity for all the parties to dialogue the promotion of vital sectors of the economy in sustainable development models. According to Minister Denaj, fiscal consolidation, sectoral economic policies, natural resources, country’s competitive advantages and the potential of human resources are key factors to enable a structured medium-term economic growth.

For more information please visit: https://www.investment.com.al/investment-council-discusses-on-investment-potentials-and-priority-sectors/

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FIAA participates the World Bank Consultative Meeting with Private Sector

September 20, 2019
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The World Bank Group (WBG) has been preparing the Systematic Country Diagnostic (SCD) update for Albania. The first SCD for Albania was submitted to the WBG Board and published in 2015. The updated SCD is required as the evidence base to prepare the next Country Partnership Framework (CPF) that would define the engagement between the WBG and Albania in the next five years.

In frame of consultations with a range of stakeholders in Albania and for the purpose of gathering and analyzing evidence, a consultative meeting was held in September 18th at the World Bank office in Tirana. Ms. Ana Maria Oviedo and Mr. Christoph Ungerer, main authors of the SCD presented the preliminary findings, followed by discussion and comments and meeting participants.

FIAA was represented in this meeting by Board Director Mr. Perparim Kalo.

The SCD update focuses on measuring Albania’s progress towards reaching the WBG “Twin Goals” of: eliminating poverty and advancing shared prosperity.

The SCD update is also mandated to identify key binding constraints to achieve the Twin Goals and policy priorities to tackle them.

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FIAA organizes Roundtable on the Draft Law on Invoices and the System for Monitoring the Transactions

September 11, 2019
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Over the last months, FIAA has circulated for consultation among its members the Draft Law on “Invoices and the System for Monitoring the Transactions”. The changes proposed in this draft law are expected to have a broader impact for business in Albania in the next year.

As a follow up of the potential issues identified by FIAA members, various comments and opinions, in September 11th, FIAA organized a technical level consultation Roundtable with the participation of the Vice Minister of Finance and Economy Mr. Elton Haxhi and the Ministry’s Advisor Mrs. Arjana Dyrmishi.

Several representatives of FIAA shared their opinion and introduced relevant recommendations and arguments in support of improvements of the draft. There were several questions from business related to the manner the transactions’ law would function, administrative duties, necessary training, categories to be included and excluded, etc.

Based on the collected recommendations and comments, Experts in charge will continue to improve the Draft and try to reflect the Business Concerns shared during the Discussion. FIAA looks forward to the final reviewed draft law.

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Investment Law, discussions are going on

June 26, 2019
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During the last months, FIAA has circulated among its members the Draft Unified Investment Law, which is open for consultation. As a follow up of the various comments and opinions, the Responsible Body for its Business Consultation, the Albania Investment Council in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance and Economy and presence of IFC Experts organized in June 25th a consultation round table.

FIAA was present with several Representatives, who shared their opinion and introduced the member’ recommendations in support of a good Investment Law in Albania. The discussion was mainly focused on the general terms of the Draft Law principles, but also didn’t miss the technical level discussion, along with lots of relevant arguments. Based on the collected recommendations and comments, the Experts in charge will continue to improve the Draft and try to reflect the Business Concerns shared during the Discussion.

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FIAA presents the outcomes of the Business Environment Survey in Albania 2018-2019

June 8, 2019
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Unfavorable Business Climate, Monopoly and Corruption continue to remain the most concerning issues. 

During a mid-year event in June, FIAA presented the outcomes of its Business Environment Survey 2019. The Survey was conducted among the Membership of FIAA which are the most important foreign businesses in the country, operating in various industries such as, energy, oil, mining, banking, telecommunications, manufacturing, etc, that represent the biggest part of the FDI-s in Albania.

Business estimation on the business climate during the first six months of the year was stated as unfavorable. When asked to rate the climate from 0 to 100, where zero is unfavorable and 100 very favorable, the outcome from businesses was 39. Expectations seems to be a little more positive for the second half of the year with the index rising to 45, but still falling below 50.

The Survey outcome collects as the most concerning, obstacles like monopoly & unfair competition, corruption, Government bureaucracy and informal economy. However, positive feedback was also stated by respondents in the relations with improvements in the banking system policies, access to finance, labor rules, intellectual property rights, and energy supply. Also, the relations with the customs and the central government were rated with positive notes.

During the Results presentation, The Minister of Finance and Economy, Mrs. Anila Denaj, present in the Event, said that the government is open to ongoing dialogue with entrepreneurs. She added that bureaucracies have fallen sharply, as confirmed in the World Bank’s Doing Business report.

Minister Denaj said it is true that 2-3 foreign companies have left Albania, but according to the 5-month data from the National Business Center, 89 new businesses with foreign shareholders have been opened.

Further, the Minister presented the Fiscal project, which the Ministry of Finance has launched this year, with the goal that in the year 2020, all payments can be performed electronically. This will contribute to a very sensitive reduction of informality. She announced to the businesses the results of the reforms undertaken by the government, such as those dealing with deregulation reform, with licenses, that today are given online 99%. During her word Minister Denaj invited the members of FIAA to visit the Vocational Schools and Labor Offices in every location they operate, in order to better mediate the needs of parties, job seekers and employers.

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FIAA Representatives met with an UNDP Mission

May 27, 2019
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FIAA representatives were invited for a business breakfast with UNDP Albania, an activity set up with the most important actors of the private sector in Albania. The UNDP was represented by the Country Resident Head and the representatives from Regional Centre in Istanbul who introduced their recent programs and focus on the private sector engagement and development of partnerships. On the other side, FIAA representatives introduced their initiatives on support of the Economy and Communities they work with. They also emphasized the importance that business has given to Social Responsibility during the recent years and the vision they have to further play a role on the development of the social and economic growth of the country.

During the Meeting were introduced and discussed the Sustainable Development Goals achievement which for, UNDP sees the private sector playing a vital role as an engine of economic growth and creation of jobs.

In this ambit, FIAA was invited to cooperate with UNDP on different projects where, private sector as an important partner for UNDP could play a critical role towards sustainable development and alleviating poverty in its all forms and accelerating structural transformations.

FIAA Representatives expressed their appreciation on this invitation and showed the openness to cooperate with UNDP on these important programs for Albania.

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